Research and Reviews on Healthcare: Open Access Journal

DOI: 10.32474/RRHOAJ.2020.05.000223 ISSN: 2637-6679 Review Article

Heterogeny In Analyses of The Greek God : A Systematic Review

Trevor C Hunt BA* College of Health Professions, The University of Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ, USA

*Corresponding author: Trevor C Hunt BA, College of Health Professions, 4035 S Riverpoint Pkwy, Phoenix, AZ, USA

Received: October 02, 2020 Published: October 12, 2020

Abstract Hermes was the god of trade, wealth, luck, fertility, animal husbandry, sleep, language, thieves, and travel. One of the cleverest and most mischievous of the Olympian gods, he was the patron of shepherds, invented the , and was, above all, the herald and messenger of Mt. Olympus so that he came to symbolize the crossing of boundaries in his role as a guide between the two realms of gods and humanity. To the Romans, the god was known as . Herein, we present a review of the literature

expoundingKeywords: upon Urology; significant Hermes; heterogeneity Greek; Mythology; in the classicalReview understanding and interpretation of this figure within urology.

Main Text extremely broad work that is the , Hermes is given some The Slayer of Argos; Keeper of the Flocks; Messenger of the of his most crucial traits. His power over animals and ability to Gods: all of these are epithets for the glorious Greek god Hermes make them mate and produce offspring is referenced early on in a that appear in the urologic literature. Indeed, Hermes is quite the passage speaking primarily of , who shares the same power multifaceted character in the Greek mythological tradition. As with [1]. Later in the work, uses the phrase “glorious Hermes” most Olympians, he occupies a wide range of positions among the and refers to him as “the Immortals’ herald” when describing his Immortals and appears in a vast amount of mythic tales. Naturally, lineage from and the Atlantid , who is the daughter of with such a broad range of material composed over such an the Titan [1]. Although only two lines, Hesiod’s words were not chosen lightly, as “glorious Hermes” is a meaningful and not always set in stone. Akin to a headless marble sculpture, the expansive time period, the characteristics that define Hermes are commonly used epithet throughout . For the main components of Hermes’ character are universal throughout most part, Hermes is a very likeable and positive character. He embodies many of the characteristics of the ideal Greek, albeit not by each individual author. The majority of works present a rather Greek mythology, yet the more specific details were often decided to the same level as . As the direct descendant of Zeus, he is one dimensional Hermes, casting him as either a brave and expected to be wise, fair, and morally inclined, and this is generally glorious messenger or a bold and wheedling ; however, the the case, admittedly with a handful of exceptions cropping up in Homeric Hymn to Hermes appropriately fuses these two contrary his early youth. Furthermore, Hermes’ blood relation to the characterizations and presents a holistic view of Hermes that is probably played a part in the incredible strength that he is born both accurate and functional. with, which impresses even his fellow gods [2]. As messenger of Hermes takes on an almost entirely positive role in Hesiod’s the gods, Hermes must constantly represent the will of Zeus and Theogony as well as in the Homeric Hymn to Apollo and the his fellow Olympians, so it is only natural that his leadership skills Homeric Hymn to . While only mentioned twice in the are superior to that of most other Immortals. This aptitude for

Copyright © All rights are reserved by Trevor C Hunt BA. 537 Res & Rev Health Care Open Acc J Volume 5 - Issue 5 Copyrights @ Trevor C Hunt BA.

leadership is displayed indirectly when Apollo divulges his desire from inside of him. Hermes’ foul play does not stop here, however, to both prophesy the will of Zeus and play the lyre,[3] which is an as Zeus also asks him to deliver the troublesome to the instrument that Hermes himself invented. Prophesy in Greek is a form of divine leadership bestowed as a riddle upon mortal gladly completes. Pandora is given to disguised as a human whom had given fire to, a task which Hermes worshipers, and the author uses the association of prophesy with gift, leading to the opening of Pandora’s Box and the scattering of the lyre as a way to reference the elevated leadership skills that miseries and displeasures into the mortal world.5 What is striking Hermes possesses. Furthermore, a slightly more literal example is about this tale is not necessarily its subject matter, but the new and the march of Apollo and his Cretan followers to his at Pytho. dishonorable traits associated with Hermes. While still the loyal During this march, Apollo plays his beloved lyre while the Cretans, and wise messenger of Zeus, he is now additionally portrayed as following behind, beat time and sing joyously [3]. In contrast to these obscure references to Hermes’ intrinsic qualities, more his “wheedling words”;[5] no longer is Hermes merely skilled in being skilled in the ways of trickery. Specifically, Zeus references direct characterizations are present in the Hymn to Demeter, in debate and persuasion, he is now seen as achieving these ends which Demeter casts a curse on the Earth’s agriculture because her through deceptive means. It is ironic that this evolution in Hesiod’s beloved daughter is taken to the Underworld by the portrayal of Hermes comes in a poem that is centrally concerned god . As herald of the Immortals, Hermes is sent to Erebos with teaching good values. Additional dark elements of Hermes’ to reason with Hades and ultimately bring Persephone back to her personality make themselves known in the . The Titan Prometheus has been bound by Zeus for the crime of, phrase “wheedle Hades with soft words” when describing Hermes’ mother,4 a task in which he is successful. Specifically, Zeus uses the task [4]. In doing so, Zeus alludes to Hermes’ cunning mind and men. Late in the play, Hermes enters, acting as the loyal mouthpiece contradictory to Hesiod’s account, giving fire to the race of mortal persuasive diction which are crucial to his success in the rescue of Zeus, who wants Prometheus to divulge a piece of information of Persephone. Indeed, the myth paints a rather heroic picture of that is crucial to the continuation of Zeus’ reign over the Immortals Hermes as the savior of Persephone. By venturing bravely into the [6]. In a manner that is rarely, if ever, seen in his character Hermes depths of Hades in search of a damsel in distress, Hermes embodies speaks quite authoritatively to Prometheus, criticizing and belittling him at every opportunity. Right from the start, Hermes burning buildings to rescue those who are trapped and unable to has an attitude similar to that of a playground bully, picking on the heroism associated with modern day firemen, who boldly enter save themselves. Further cementing his role as a brave and glorious Prometheus and calling him names [6]. This is a striking contrast savior is the epithet that he is referred to by, Slayer of Argos [4]. to the glorious, heroic Hermes portrayed in other works such as Argos was a monstrous herdsman with eyes all over his body that the Hymn to Demeter. In his defense, Hermes does attempt to help requisitioned to guard during the period in which Zeus Prometheus’ situation, trying to get him to see reason and submit lusted for her. At the bidding of Zeus, Hermes loyally sought out and to the will of Zeus, as he can gain nothing by opposing it.6 However, slayed Argos, which was not an easy task as Argos was very similar Hermes still resorts to childish impulsiveness; when Prometheus to Hermes in that he was both swift and cunning. In completing his mocks Hermes’ position, calling him a mere errand boy, Hermes duties, Hermes earned the prestigious title Slayer of Argos. This quickly retorts with a sarcastic verbal blow[6]. Such bickering heroism, combined with the wisdom, loyalty, and leadership that is unseemly among divine beings, especially one as revered as Hermes possesses is often demonstrated by Greek authors who Hermes. Despite both his bullying tactics and his genuine, earnest prefer to shed a positive light on Hermes’ character. attempts to help Prometheus see reason which are approved of by

On the contrary, a more mischievous, dishonest undertone makes no progress with Prometheus and resorts to a blunt show is present in Hermes’ character in works such as ’ the Leader character, who confirms Hermes’ wisdom,[6] Hermes of power in which he describes Zeus’ impending wrath.6 This is a Prometheus Bound and Hesiod’s . At its most basic drastic contrast to the mainstream Hermes who is generally able level, this morally defunct characterization of Hermes is visible in to accomplish his ends, whether they are noble or mischievous, Hesiod’s didactic poem. The Works and Days functions as a moral via wisely chosen words and his compelling persuasiveness. While code of sorts for Greek citizens. This serves to heighten the contrast both the Works and Days and the Prometheus Bound expose Hermes’ dishonest side, Aeschylus’ poem is truly unique in that it thereof in Hermes’ character, which draws the reader’s attention between the good morals recommended by Hesiod and the deficit portrays a menacing Hermes does not present in other areas of the immediately to him. In the section dealing with life’s hardships, Greek tradition. to man, commissions the gods to create a woman named Pandora Whereas other works tend to show a rather limited view Hesiod says that Zeus, in retribution for Prometheus’ gift of fire [5]. Into this woman, at Zeus’ request, Hermes puts “lies and of Hermes’ personality, the Homeric Hymn to Hermes presents wheedling words and a cheating heart”,[5] which of course came the big picture, drawing upon all other sources and presenting a

Citation: Trevor C Hunt BA. Heterogeny In Analyses of The Greek God Hermes: A Systematic Review. Res & Rev Health Care Open Acc J 5(5)- 2020. RRHOAJ.MS.ID.000223. DOI: 10.32474/RRHOAJ.2020.05.000223. 538 Res & Rev Health Care Open Acc J Volume 5 - Issue 5 Copyrights @ Trevor C Hunt BA.

complete, unabridged representation of the glorious Immortal. In blatantly lie to his father Zeus’ face about his theft of the cows [2]. 3-D cinematography, two offset images in two contrasting colors Zeus responds with laughter at his child’s wisdom in evil ways, but are projected onto the screen. In Greek mythology, Hermes is often swiftly asserts his authority by instructing Hermes to show Apollo portrayed as such; the same image of him appears in many different where he has hid the cattle [2]. This interaction carries heavy works, but the colors vary between two primary shades. Only when one looks through a set of 3-D glasses does the true image personality, this time from the highest moral judge in the land, implications as it again justifies both contrasting sides of Hermes’ materialize. The Homeric Hymn to Hermes is the mythological equivalent of a pair of these glasses, as it takes from the two life in which he, albeit unknowingly, serves as Zeus’ loyal messenger Zeus. Furthermore, it also serves as the first instance in Hermes’ differing characterizations of Hermes often seen in the Greek by bending to his will. In addition, it presents Hermes’ intense tradition and combines them in a way that paints a splendid picture likability as a god in Greek mythology, demonstrating that he can of who he really is. The myth largely avoids discussing Hermes’ lie to even the chief god and still garner his approval. Additionally, position as Zeus’ messenger, which is already widely known among Hermes is later able to earn Apollo as a close friend when he gives the tradition, and instead focuses on his moral development during him the lyre that he crafted in order to resolve an argument [2]. childhood and his ascension to a position among the Olympians. On So great is Apollo’s reverence for Hermes and his wonderful lyre the day of his birth, the author immediately speaks of Hermes as that 20 lines are dedicated solely to his awe [2]. This scene again being “wily and wheedling”,[2] the latter of which is a term found reinforces Hermes’ astounding likability among the gods while also in many other works when describing Hermes’ vexatious side. nearly any quarrel using merely words. In a show of honesty that demonstrating his selflessness and his compelling ability to settle his cunning mind and insistent curiosity by killing a tortoise and boldly balances out his earlier deeds, Hermes vows never to steal Miraculously, on his first day of existence, Hermes demonstrates fashioning a wonderful new instrument out of it, the lyre [2]. Not from Apollo,[2] which contrasts with his earlier intentions to break into and rob Apollo’s house. At this point, although only two days of deepest deception” and then sets out to the mountains of Pieria old, it is possible to see a deep maturation that has occurred in satisfied with just this accomplishment, he contemplates “devices to steal 50 cows from his brother Apollo [2]. While only a mere Hermes’ moral code. While still retaining an aptitude for deception 70 lines into the work, it is already clear that the author is fully and trickery, lines have now been drawn in his conscience as to blending Hermes’ mischievous traits with his adventurous ones. what situations allow for the exercising of these methods. As Gravity is added to the matter by the fact that all of this is occurring both messenger of Zeus and sole courier to Hades, [2] Hermes occupies positions that require him to utilize every single drop of bad components were present from birth, before Hermes ascended wisdom, ingenuity, and occasionally, trickery that he possesses. on Hermes’ first day of life, implying that both his morally good and to power at Olympus. In contrast to mortals, whose morals are most While quietly acknowledging the positive characteristics generally aligned at birth and tend to decay as they obtain more and more associated with Hermes, the Homeric Hymn to Hermes serves to power, Hermes was born with a jumble of both morally good and justify the manner in which these noble traits coexist with his less morally bad characteristics, the latter of which only began to be morally-sound attributes, which ultimately allows for the creation curtailed when he ascended to power as Zeus’ herald. In stealing of a character that is much more versatile than versions seen in the Apollo’s cows, Hermes again demonstrates his cunning and majority of other Greek [7]. deception by reversing their hooves so that their tracks point the Despite his appearance in an abundance of mythic material, opposite direction[2]. For himself, he wisely invents wicker sandals the truly complete portrayal of Hermes’ character is seen almost so as to disguise his footprints as well.2 He then demonstrates his exclusively in the Homeric Hymn to Hermes. While other works surprising strength when he wrangles two of the cattle and kills such as the Hymn to Demeter, Hymn to Apollo, Prometheus Bound, them,2 a feat which later impresses even Apollo, who is the epitome Works and Days, and the Theogony can present a two dimensional of the Greek male [2]. Apollo is also impressed by the hoof trick and view of Hermes, the Hymn to Hermes smelts all other views the wicker sandals, which serves to justify Hermes’ clever deception together and delivers a living, breathing manifestation of Hermes in addition to his strength and heroism. This theme, that both the that is impeccably complete. Given the nature of Greek myth, it is good and bad aspects of Hermes’ personality are just and should be possible to paint a big picture of a god or goddess by looking at praised, permeates throughout the work and is a crucial element a variety of primary sources, but the individual brush strokes will in the development of Hermes’ character in the mythic tradition. always vary from work to work. Still, when it comes to Hermes, the His deception comes to a climax when Hermes uses “ruses and Homeric Hymn to Hermes is a true Mona Lisa akin to the success of the robotic-assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy [8]. tricks and flattering words” to deceive Apollo and then proceeds to

Citation: Trevor C Hunt BA. Heterogeny In Analyses of The Greek God Hermes: A Systematic Review. Res & Rev Health Care Open Acc J 5(5)- 2020. RRHOAJ.MS.ID.000223. DOI: 10.32474/RRHOAJ.2020.05.000223. 539 Res & Rev Health Care Open Acc J Volume 5 - Issue 5 Copyrights @ Trevor C Hunt BA.

References 5. Hesiod. “Works and Days.” In: Harris and Platzner pp.128-133. 1. Hesiod. “Theogony.” In: Harris and Platzner pp.88-105. 6. Aeschylus (2013) “Prometheus Bound.” 2. “Homeric Hymn to Hermes.” In: Harris and Platzner pp.209-223. 7. Harris, Stephen L, Gloria Platzner, eds (2012) Classical Mythology: Images & Insights. 6th ed. New York: Mcgraw-Hill. 3. “Homeric Hymn to Apollo.” In: Harris and Platzner pp.134-142. 8. Schuessler WW, Schulam PG, Clayman RV, Kavoussi LR (1997) 4. “Homeric Hymn to Demeter.” In: Harris and Platzner pp.156-167. Laparoscopic radical prostatectomy: initial short-term experience. Urology. 50(6): 854-857.

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Citation: Trevor C Hunt BA. Heterogeny In Analyses of The Greek God Hermes: A Systematic Review. Res & Rev Health Care Open Acc J 5(5)- 2020. RRHOAJ.MS.ID.000223. DOI: 10.32474/RRHOAJ.2020.05.000223. 540